Russia Blames Georgia for African Swine Fever

by 5m Editor
11 April 2012, at 8:56am

RUSSIA - Russia’s chief sanitary doctor Gennady Onishchenko said on Monday the recent outbreak of African Swine Fever Virus (ASFV) in South Russia was a result of "economic subversion" by Georgia.

According to RIA Novosti, Mr Onishchenko said, "ASFV came to us from Georgia. It first appeared in Ossetia, and then spread to the Krasnodar and Stavropol territories. [The outbreak] shows signs of being an artificially created situation. This is an act of economic subversion that the Krasnodar Territory has been unable to tackle for three years."

Swine fever outbreaks can seriously impair the animal breeding industry because the disease can neither be treated nor prevented by vaccination. The entire stock of pigs in an affected location has to be culled in order to contain the virus.

RIA Novosti reports that since 2007 the swine fever virus was detected in 254 locations in 24 Russian regions. More than 440,000 pigs have since been culled to prevent the disease from spreading.

African swine fever, or Montgomery's disease, was first reported in Africa in 1903. Both domestic and wild animals can become infected when they come into contact with sick animals. The virus does not affect humans.